When Books Become Available
Due to the amount of emails I get asking me when a book is going to be available on a site like Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Diesel, Sony, and Apple, I am making this post which I will then link up to my website.
The short answer is this: I have no control over the timing of my books going to any of the above listed stores. That’s all under Smashwords’ control.
Now here’s the long answer….
When I publish a book, I go directly to two channels. I go to Amazon’s Kindle and to Smashwords. So let’s take Suddenly a Bride as an example since I’ll be publishing that around July 1.
I publish Suddenly a Bride to Amazon for the Kindle and for Smashwords on the same day. Amazon will have it up within 2 days. It might take an extra day for the description of the book to show up.
Now the book will be available on the same day on Smashwords. Smashwords, by the way, supports all ebook formats, so regardless of what type of ereader you have, you can download the book from there if you don’t want to wait for the Smashwords’ distribution channels to pick it up. Smashwords also have pdfs and a web version of the book you can download and read off your computer.
How long it takes Smashwords to ship the book out to Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Sony, Diesel, and Apple depends on a variety of factors:
1. how long it takes for Smashwords to approve the formatting
2. how backed up Smashwords is on sending out other books
3. how backed up other sites are in putting the books up on their site
All I can say is that those three factors vary. I can’t say exactly what the time frame is for any of them. I can guess. Smashwords approval takes about 1-2 weeks. Sending them out depends on the distribution site. Barnes & Noble has typically been the quickest. Once the book is approved, it’s usually up in 2-3 weeks. Someone just asked why I don’t upload to Barnes & Noble. Mainly, I trust Smashwords to pay me, and since Smashwords has been good to me, I want to stay with them. Smashwords doesn’t distribute to Amazon. When they do, I’ll keep my account with Amazon since it’s already there.
So if I publish Suddenly a Bride on July 1, it might be up at Barnes & Noble in August. The other sites, I would say it can be up to a few months. So it could, theoretically, take up to December for Suddenly a Bride to be up on one of those sites. They used to be faster, but since more authors are publishing with Smashwords, it’s slowed the system down.
What if you want the book as soon as it comes out?
If you don’t want to wait for the book to be available on your preferred site, my recommendation is to either download the free Kindle for PC, iPhone, Android, Blackberry, or iPad app off of Amazon and buy the book from Amazon. If you go to the link for the Kindle version of my book, you will find the options for the Kindle apps to the right side under the ‘Buy’ button.
So it’s up to you on how you want to do this. You can have the book as soon as it’s out or wait for it to be available on the site of your choice. I can only control when it’s up on Amazon and Smashwords.
While I am making this post, I should also state that I am not making any more paperbacks.